A7X Bring the Smoke & their Main Stream Punk Rock Sound to the Allstate Arena     
Written by TIFFANY ZACK / Photos by LYLE A. WAISMAN    

Where else should the Long Beach base punk-metal group Avenged Sevenfold finish their latest jaunt around North American but at Chicago’s Allstate Arena. In support of their current self-titled album, the band set out this past January with the alternative rock band Buckcherry (the second tour together for the pair) for a series of shows for their first leg of touring. 
Featuring an all-star rock line up thatincluded Saving Abel and Papa Roach , the Allstate wasn’t nearly as frenzied as you would expect from the usual ruckus rock crowd. Other than the occasional crowd surfer and the twenty head bangers in Section 212, the room was about as stiff as a dried prune.

It wasn’t until finally when the smoke flooded the arena that the all ages crowd woke up and came alive. Avenged Sevenfold took the stage, coming out in a satanic like vibe. M. Shadows (vocals) worked the stage as he darted from one platform to the other, while Zacky Vengeance (guitar) and Synster Gates (guitar) battled it out like a scene from their living room playing Guitar Hero for the win.

Known to many as “A7F,” they’re not only musical virtuosos, but incredible stage performers. Guitarists Vengeance and Gates bearing thick eyeliner and fake blood, elated fan’s spirits as they executed devious guitar solos complimented by their intense stage antics. There ability to work the crowd was magnified as more and more bodies piled into securities arms with one after another surfing across the sea of sweaty teens, young adults, and former rockers to the front of the stage.

Their music is both dark and haunting, but irresistible. The front row masked screaming girls and shirtless young men; both exhibiting a wide array of piercings, tattoos, and eclectic hair styles. Similar to those infamous rock bands before them, A7F exhibits qualities and owe a tip of their hats to quite a few head-banger bands from the Eighties.

Performing their latest single “Scream,” the crowd vigorously belted out the ending chorus, “Cherishing, those feelings pleasuring. Cover me, unwanted clemency. Scream till there’s silence. Scream while there’s life left, vanishing. Scream from the pleasure unmask your desire. Perishing.”

With four studio albums, an MTV Best New Artist Award in 2006, and an album that debuted at number four on the Billboard Top 200, it’s easy to see why these boys continue to have a growing fan base worldwide. For more information, including new tour information, check out www.avengedsevenfold.com/.



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